July 9, 2016
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Warrior Queen is just under three-months-old, and I am reminded of the most spectacular trait of newborns. They are nothing but love; amorphous, moist beings of love. Holding my daughter is often an all day event, but after feedings is prime smile time. My fierce girl is so happy in these moments she looks as though she might split from her wide, beaming smile. She wiggles ecstatically too, as though the smile consuming most of her face isn’t quite large enough; the happiness and excitement must spread throughout the rest of the body she hasn’t discovered quite yet.
Food works the same magic with me, so I cannot quite say she is behaving in a manner unique to her life stage, but when she looks at me, I often receive the same greeting; her brother too, and my father…my husband and mother notsomuch, but that is a post for another time… I comment on this because my son was the same way. Other parents concur. While my case sample does not hold water against the strictest research standards, it is enough for me to conclude that people are just born this way. Sure, there is colic and any litany of upsetting health issues that damper a baby’s disposition, but a garden variety infant is nothing but love that threatens to push out any potential seam.
I remember when Little Man was this age; my top parenting priority became preserving his capacity for love, pressing me to reflect on how one can even go about something like that. Part of my ruminations yielded my realization that I must model love. My husband, that’s an easy one. My family, mostly easy. My friends, no problem…because I like to think I don’t collect asshats in my life. But, then there is the rest of humanity, and I concluded how I navigate through daily encounters is probably the most profound, especially when I don’t realize my children are watching. I’ve always been generally polite, but never took any social initiative. That is different now, and I found something interesting that I only recently noticed as my son grew old enough to irritate bystanders: other children notice too. I’m not omniscient, but that seems important.
It saddens me to read so much helplessness and hopelessness in the news and social media. A wise supervisor referred to this phenomena as giving away our power. A shame because love never leaves us; sometimes it remains dormant waiting patiently for our attention, but it waits nonetheless.